Category Archives: New Businesses

Now Open: Zouk Los Angeles

Zouk is the tale of two sisters… having only the best of times. Jenny Best and Katharina Tagliaferro, two Swedes with purpose and pizzazz, have always loved traveling together to far off places. Based in Los Angeles, and Australia, respectively, Jenny and Katharina’s love for travel, artistry, and charitable pursuits inspired them to open their truly unique new boutique, Zouk Los Angeles.

Zouk can, of course, be found on Montana Ave., Santa Monica’s Mecca of the marvelous and unusual. The store itself is almost like a portal or a magic wardrobe that transports you to exotic lands filled to the brim with the finest goods from each corner of the world…  Moroccan candles, Turkish towels, Indian pillows, Peruvian alpaca wools, Portuguese ceramics, Thai ice buckets, Swedish jewelry and art… And that’s just a fraction of the bevy of goods found at Zouk. Vintage wares abound, as well as revamped and recycled fabrics, mirrors, and Persian rugs. Plus the shelves of the spacious store are made with re-purposed scaffolding planks. So cool.

Everything in the store is a one-of-a kind gift for someone special. It’s your choice if you tell the recipient you just got back from a trip to Thailand, or clue them in on your new find in sunny Santa Monica. I vote the latter, of course, because it’d be good karma to share this place.

The best part of Zouk, however, is charity. For every item that you purchase, Zouk will donate 3% of the selling price to a charity of your choice. Inspired by international, national, or local causes? Zouk has it all on its charity list—Green Peace, World Food Program, Heal the Bay, and Ocean Park Community Center—beautifully inscribed on the enormous chalkboard above the register. Chic and philanthropic.

Here’s the thing about Zouk—I want to live there. Seriously, I want to bring my laptop and lounge the day away on their lush couches and cushions with imported pillows, in one of their baby-soft bathrobes. With portraits and fabulous artwork adorning the walls, and cases of fantastic ethno-awesome jewelry… what more could you ask?

So next time you find yourself meandering along Montana and you wander into Zouk, and you see a funny brunette girl smelling the bath salts on the coffee table, and reading Luxe Guide books about Singapore and Indonesia—that’d be me. I’m a fan.

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Zouk Los Angeles
(310) 260-1230
1311 Montana Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90403

About the Author, Annie
Annie is a recording artist/writer who delights in personal alchemy, whimsy, & quantum physics. She can often be found drinking tea, eating cake, or changing the world. She blogs about the delicacies of daily life in the city of angels at

All pictures taken by Buy Local Market photographer, Da Xu.


Now Open: Tender Greens

Since opening their first Culver City location in 2006, the popular chef-driven, Tender Greens has steadily been gaining a mini cult following among health-conscious foodies. From the start, mastermind chefs Erik Oberholtzer, David Dressler and Matt Lyman had a goal of filling a void that was missing in Los Angeles – creating a healthy, farm-driven, and affordable, fine dining experience in a relaxed, eco-friendly space. This newly opened location is a perfect extension of their ever-growing mission.

Known for their market friendly, locally acquired produce, they also feature humanely raised, hormone free meats and sustainably caught seafood. This new location will encompass everything that the Tender Greens model is known for: sustainability, fresh and healthy farm-to-fork dishes at reasonable price (there’s nothing over $11).

Location, location, location. The long-awaited, Santa Monica Tender Greens is perfectly situated just off the Promenade. It’s nestled on the corner of Arizona Ave and 2nd Street. I got to chat with the very nice and incredibly passionate, Executive Chef Rian Brandenburg about what makes this location special. First off, this venue along with the Pasadena Tender Greens, are the first to go completely bottle-less, meaning all drinks are available on tap. From sparkling water to house made agua frescas, lemonades and ice teas, all are made fresh daily. They also feature various keg beer and wine. As for their site, along with acquiring their greens fresh daily from Scarborough Farms (as with every Tender Greens), they also have the advantage of securing the best local produce directly from the source. This restaurant is positioned just 2 blocks from the Santa Monica farmer’s market. Can’t get more local than this!

Chef Brandenburg is a San Diego native and has an extensive background in the California fish market scene.  He explained to me that while the core menu always stays the same, each of the seven Tender Greens locations offers unique dishes inspired by their respective executive chefs. For example, at this particular site, Brandenburg introduces his three dishes, which are appropriately inspired by their “beachy” environment. The Grilled Octopus and Thai Shrimp Salad are expertly sea-minded, while The Salad in the Raw features fresh produce direct from the Santa Monica Farmers Market.

Grilled Octopus Salad

Okay, I’m not going to lie; octopus is probably the most odd-looking creature you may ever eat. However, the Grilled Octopus Salad was incredibly tender, slightly salty, crispy and grilled to perfection. It was darn good. If you’ve never tried octopus before, I implore you to try this salad. It will blow your mind. Likewise, the Salad in the Raw was so delicate and delicious too; it’s a nice reminder of just how scrumptious fresh veggies can taste when left alone to do their thang. My favorite dish of the day was actually the Thai Shrimp Salad. Along with the tender and juicy shrimp mixed together with little gem lettuce, Thai basil, green papaya, hints of citrus, coriander and a chili lime vinaigrette, every ingredient lent a subtle touch that was so refreshingly delightful.

Fans of the classic Tender Greens menu, as always can still order their popular “big salads,” “hot stuff from the grill,” “comfort soups,” sandwiches and “simple salads” as well.

Everything about the Santa Monica location is very eco-friendly. The custom-made art shows the journey of their produce from the farm to your plate. The décor is bright with large windows, airy, clean and inviting. The designers utilized the original exposed brick (from the previous Lighthouse Buffet tenants) and everything from the tables, counter tops, floors and chairs were built from the broken down and rehashed wood material from the very building they inhabit among other recycled sources. The bamboo is 100% recyclable and the roof is made from compressed hay. They provide triple-filtered recycled water and their cups and bags are biodegradable. “It’s where the world is headed,” says Chef Brandenburg, he explained how it’s important for Tender Greens to “do what’s right for our earth” they don’t flaunt their eco-ways they’re just passionate about what they do.

“I really like dealing directly with farmers and being able to source locally,” says Brandenburg. “I can walk over to the farmer’s market and show the farmers, look, this is your tomato and this is what I did with it.” Here, they really want to “drive the message home” explains Brandenburg. It’s really about “accountability and responsibility.”

Check out the new Santa Monica, Tender Greens location and taste the difference for yourself. It doesn’t get any more natural than this.

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Tender Greens
(310) 587-2777
201 Arizona Avenue Santa Monica CA, 90401

Do you want to know when new, fun businesses open in Santa Monica? Leave us your email!

About the author
Amy T. Shuster is an actress, writer, singer and food enthusiast. Her blog is,, which focuses on creating positive content to help generate awareness of local independent foodie “gems” in the Los Angeles area. Amy lives and dines in Los Angeles, CA.

All pictures taken by Buy Local Market photographer, Da Xu.

Now Open: Next Door by Josie

The newly opened Next Door by Josie is the younger sister restaurant to the popular upscale, veteran eatery Josie in Santa Monica. While both venues are ventures of chef and owner Josie Le Balch, Next Door provides an opportunity for her and her Chef de Cuisine, Mai Khanh Le to shake things up and “play” a little bit. Opening up a second restaurant in Santa Monica is something Chef Josie had been thinking about doing for a long while (saving up 10 years worth of wine corks from Josie’s patrons) and the opportunity finally presented itself. Connected at the kitchen to Josie’s, Next Door caters to a more youthful crowd as the sleek design and ambiance is that of an upscale sports bar with a cozy bistro feel. It’s affordable, neighborhood friendly and is the perfect gals night out or second date kind of place.

Describing her food style as “progressive American with French and Italian influences” Chef Josie tries to refrain from boxing her style of food into any specific category. Instead, it’s a “melting pot” of the stuff she likes to eat. Her diverse menu at Next Door is a prime example of this. The menu is comprised of a good variety of small snacks, appetizers, soups, sandwiches and bigger entrées. Don’t expect traditional “bar food” here, the bigger plates feature items like the Tarragon-Roasted Half Chicken, Steamed Mussels and Farmer’s Market Vegetable Pot Pie. There’s an American Charcuterie and Cheese bar, which is a perfect grown-up accompaniment to enjoy with something from the bar. Make sure you try the farmer’s market orange blossom honey with the meat – just sayin’.

Chef Mai is a Southern California native who spent some time cooking in New York. She has a broad span of knowledge from different culinary cuisines and the plates that come out of the kitchen reflect this. Chef Mai calls her menu, “eclectic.” In addition, I would add that it’s sophisticated, yet fun. Next Door has nearly been open a week and favorites are already surfacing. Looking around to neighboring tables as I ate, the Beer & Bacon Caramel Corn and the Duck Confit Bánh Mí seemed to be the popular orders of the night. I tried both and each was delicious. The Bánh Mí is a little bit spicy and extremely tasty. And I must say, after trying the Beer and Bacon Caramel Corn, I am so glad I started eating bacon earlier this year!

Also, some delicious and notable small plates are the Wild Game Chili appetizer and Heirloom Tomatoes. The chili meat was tender and mild while the tomatoes were simple and elegant.

My favorite dish of the evening was actually the Natural Beef Hot Dog (go figure)! It was a simple but sophisticated, upscale dog. Complete with a generous heap of fennel kraut and a light layer of ballpark mustard, this is exactly how you dress up a dog! It lay on a delicious, toasted house made bun that makes me never want to go back to a regular bun again. The dog is a must get.

The uncomplicated yet very delicious, Chocolate Walnut Brownie Torte was straightforward in presentation with nuts and a whipped cream topping, but don’t let that deceive you. The flavors and texture are anything but simple. It was the perfect ending to a deliciously satisfying evening.

See the Menu

Chef Josie’s cuisine is adventurous without being pretentious, elegant without being frou-frou. While many restaurants these days try to impress their food savvy customers with super weird concoctions or rich and heavy sauces, Next Door instead focuses on quality ingredients and freshness. Chef Josie, also known as “the chicken lady” (because she raises her own chickens!) is a big supporter of buying locally and much of their produce is acquired from the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market. She strongly believes that restaurants should co-exist with the markets – getting to know the farmers and where their food comes from.

Next Door by Josie also offers an extensive beer and wine list and along with the stylish décor around the dining room tables, there are comfortable stools at the bar to relax and watch a game. Chef Josie’s sense of humor is evident in the (anti)-artisan cocktail menu with drink names like “something strong” and “mmmm, breakfast”. They also proudly feature coffees and espressos from Groundworks Coffee as well.

Next Door is open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday 6pm until close and 5:30pm until close on Sundays.  They are hoping to expand to be open for lunch and possibly a happy hour soon. Stay tuned!

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Next Door by Josie
(310) 581-9888
2420 Pico Blvd Santa Monica, CA 90404

Do you want to know when new, fun businesses open in Santa Monica? Leave us your email!

About the author
Amy T. Shuster is an actress, writer, singer and food enthusiast. Her blog is,, which focuses on creating positive content to help generate awareness of local independent foodie “gems” in the Los Angeles area. Amy lives and dines in Los Angeles, CA.

All pictures taken by Buy Local Market photographer, Da Xu.

Now Available: Coco Café

Coco Café is as Santa Monica as you can get. The drink itself was created by two health-conscious, active Santa Monica dudes. In their first interview ever, I had the pleasure of catching up with co-creators Brian “BJ” McCaslin and Elan Eifer. Upon hearing their exciting story, and sipping their drink… bam! soon I, too, came down with a major case of “Coco Fever.” It’s contagious. It’s fantastic.

See, the drink itself is created not only by Santa Monicans, but by and large for Santa Monicans. It’s the healthy and delicious combination of what people on the coast crave… coffee and coconut water.

It all started when Elan, an unabashed athlete/yogi and general “get-up-and-go” guy, needed something yummy, caffeinated, but healthy after his workouts. He saw the copious amounts of coconut water cases being toted around, and so, he, too, jumped on the bandwagon. Soon, he was waxing “coffee chemist” in the kitchen mixing coconut water in with coffee, and the earliest form of Coco Café was born. His long-time friend Brian was soon sold on the drink, and the two realized that this was something that everyone would enjoy, especially folks with healthy, active lifestyles.

Bottling it just seemed like the next, natural step to share Coco Café with the world. But it was a process. Most people just send off their product ideas to be made, and wait to see/try the finished product. Not Brian and Elan. They wanted to be wholly apart of the development to make sure their recipe and ratios were respected.

“I said, ‘Let’s get in that lab’” Brian recounts, “We wanted to see the chemistry, and make sure they didn’t put anything else in there.” The tetrapak packaging that they decided on allowed them to keep the drink preservative-free and the ingredients few and pure. Being fair-trade was also very important to them, as was finding the finest quality espresso, milk, and coconut water. In the end, they were delighted with the results and pleased with the fruit of their labors: a pure, natural drink that matched what they made at home.

Coco Café is quite the wonder drink… It has less sugar than fruit juices, and way less than other bottled coffee drinks. So instead of grabbing a drink named after a monster or a bull, grabbing a natural Coco Café provides you not only with a boost, but real sustainable energy.

When asked when Coco Café is best enjoyed, Brian and Elan say anytime. “In the morning, it’s our go-to…” says Brian, but it’s also their afternoon pick-me-up, and “recovery drink” after a workout.

Coco Café will be on display at Santa Monica High School on Saturday, September 24th during TEDxYouth@SantaMonica. More info here.

Coco Café is available at these Santa Monica stores

  • Bay Market | 3201 Santa Monica Blvd. | (310) 260-9550
  • Bob’s Market | 1650 Ocean Park Blvd. | (310) 452-2493
  • Bru’s Wiffles | 2408 Wilshire Blvd. | (310) 453-2787
  • Kafe K | 2209 Main St #B | (310) 256-2124
  • L and K Market | 2127 Main St | (310) 396-0784
  • Marine Market | 672 Marine St
  • Santa Monica Farms | 2015 Main Street | (310) 396-4069
  • Star Liquor | 1929 Main Street | (310) 399-0149
  • Tada Cafe | 1814 Berkeley Street | (310) 586-7419

About the Author, Annie
Annie is a recording artist/writer who delights in personal alchemy, whimsy, & quantum physics. She can often be found drinking tea, eating cake, or changing the world. She blogs about the delicacies of daily life in the city of angels at

Now Open: Good Body Pilates

Pilates might just change your life. It sure has changed Emilie Bernstein’s, owner of Santa Monica’s new Good Body Pilates.  Emilie has been a Pilates enthusiast for over 14 years, but it wasn’t until recently that she realized it was her calling to be an instructor. After phenomenal results before, during, and after her two pregnancies, Emilie was inspired to further her training, and open her own Pilates studio right here in Santa Monica.

What makes Pilates so excitingly beneficial is that it works every part of your body. Its precision will have your muscles singing with joy, while the stretching elements will keep your physique long and lean. Not only that, but according to a recent study conducted by Appalachian State University, Pilates increases body awareness and relaxation that, in turn, promotes sounder sleep at night—something we could all use a little more of.

Exclusive offer: 46% off a Private Pilates Session at Good Body Pilates

Many people aren’t privy to how Pilates differs from yoga, so I asked Emilie to lay it out for us. “They are both mindful practices,” she explains, “however, the most obvious difference is that Pilates utilizes these amazing and original machines designed by Joseph Pilates that use springs and ropes to create resistance. None of the work done on the Reformers or other equipment is reminiscent of yoga. Some of it can be connected to weight training, some of it to dance, and some movements are wholly original to Pilates.”

Pilates began in the 20s when Joseph Pilates realized that it was extremely effective in body rehabilitation—first for soldiers, then dancers, and then the rest of humanity. Joseph was a strong believer in the mind/body connection. Therefore, his technique is comprised of a series of core-strengthening exercises, paired with complementary breathing designed to optimize this connection.

Emilie’s passion for Pilates is unmistakable. Not only is her own healthy glow and fervor for life and health inspiring and contagious, but you can also tell that she really cares for her clients. The beauty of Good Body Pilates, as compared to other Pilates facilities, is that Emilie creates a personalized program, designed to fit each client’s needs. “My goal,” Emilie explains, “is that each and every one of [my clients] leaves the studio feeling taller, lighter, more energetic, and more connected.”

Emilie works with total beginners and the very advanced, and for those of you who like a power workout, worry not. According to Emilie, “[Pilates] can be a meditation in motion, or it can be an energizing and tough workout. And… it can be both these things in the space of one session.”

Making a commitment to healthifying your life has never been easier… With Emilie as your coach and cheerleader, and her state-of-the-art equipment to keep it exciting, you’re sure to feel the burn whilst also feeling a whole lot better!

See you at Good Body Pilates. (Go ahead, said it aloud, there’s a ring to it.)

Get your 1st Session at Good Body Pilates for $35!

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Good Body Pilates
Rates | Visit Site
(424) 625-5518
3229 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405

About the Author, Annie
Annie is a recording artist/writer who delights in personal alchemy, whimsy, & quantum physics. She can often be found drinking tea, eating cake, or changing the world. She blogs about the delicacies of daily life in the city of angels at

All pictures taken by Buy Local Market photographer, Da Xu.

Coming Soon to Santa Monica – August 2011 Edition

Coming Soon to Santa Monica – August 2011 Edition

Get a sneak peek at some of the new restaurants, shops, hotels and events coming to town in the next 30 days. And for all the latest, you can also subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

New Restaurants

Photo Credit: Flowizm

California Shabu Shabu | 930 Broadway Santa Monica | Menu | Visit Website
CSS brings shabu-shabu, the Japanese take on Chinese hot-pot to Santa Monica. With shabu-shabu, you are the chef. You oversee a pot of boiling water in the center of the table, submerging a variety of thinly sliced beef, noodles, vegetables and spices at your own pace.

California Shabu Shabu expects to open its doors mid-September.

Photo Credit: Laurel F.

Greens Up! Salads | 3101 Main St. Santa Monica | Menu (PDF) | Visit Website
Less than a year after Chef Robert Yamarone first brought the ‘healthy, crisp, alternative food’ Greens Up! Salads serves to Montana Ave., Greens Up! is coming to Main Street.

Greens Up! allows you to create your own salad or choose from their chef selections. The produce is locally grown, farmed in an environmentally conscious way and much of it is organic and gluten-free.

Look for Greens Up! Salads on Main St. and Marine soon.

Next Door by Josie | 2420 Pico Blvd. Santa Monica | Visit Website
Josie Le Balch of Josie’s Restaurant is opening a new casual farm-to-table eatery next to the original Josie’s restaurant (featured @ 4:52 above) called, Next Door by Josie. Clever.

The restaurant is expected to open August 26th.

**[Update 9/14/11] The restaurant is now open. See our full review and pictures here.

Tender Greens | 201 Arizona Ave. Santa Monica | Menu | Visit Website
Tender Greens is set to open their 7th location in Santa Monica this August. Known and loved for their commitment to their locally sourced, fresh ingredients, Tender Greens is a natural fit for Santa Monica.

**[Update 9/14/11] The restaurant is now open. Subscribe or check back for our review.

New Shops

giggle Better Basics Happy Hippo

Giggle | 1120 Montana Ave., Santa Monica | Visit Site
Giggle’s newest store opening in early September is your one-stop source for a smarter nursery. Their collection of innovative, functional and health conscious baby products includes baby items from fun, bright bedding and furniture to gear, toys, baby care, cleaning products, and more.

New Hotels

Photo Credit: Downtown Santa Monica

Shore Hotel | 1515 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica | (800) 599-1515 | Visit Site
Shore Hotel is Santa Monica’s new green, independently owned, luxurious beachfront hotel scheduled to open October 1st. Shore Hotel is the first and only newly constructed Silver LEED registered hotel in Santa Monica. Inspired by the convergence of Southern California’s spectacular natural landscape with a unique urban fabric, Shore Hotel is the destination of choice among oceanfront hotels.

Upcoming Events

Photo Credit: E. Kelly

The Good Food Festival | Sept. 14-18 | Various Locations around Santa Monica | Visit Site
The Santa Monica Farmers Market celebrates its 30th Anniversary with the inaugural Southern California Good Food Festival & Conference. This unprecedented 5 day event will focus on regional and national issues integral to building a local and sustainable food system while supporting the needs of California family farmers.

See Our Guide to the Good Food Festival

TEDxYouth@SantaMonica: Define Yourself | Sept. 24 | Visit Site
TEDxYouth@SantaMonica is partnering with Santa Monica High School to create a TED experience for 500 local youth centered around the theme of defining yourself. Together, they are assembling an exciting and inspiring program of live speakers and TEDTalks for a memorable day of fun, insight and revelation.

The conversations will cover such diverse topics as soccer, porn and graffiti, but will always be guaranteed to make you think a little differently about how you define yourself, and are defined by others.

Learn More, Register and Find Tickets

Check back for full reviews and photo slide shows for each of these events or subscribe to get them sent straight to your Inbox.

Now Open: Stacia

I am always on the lookout for the new and beautiful—you might call me a fashion sleuth—and there’s nothing I love more than a new clothing boutique. Boutiques are so much more personal and welcoming than big department stores. They are like the indie-bookstore to a big Barnes and Noble.

So, surely, you can imagine my delight when I walked into Stacia, which just opened last month, perfectly situated just off Montana Ave. It’s bright, airy, and cheery—a perfect light, white canvas to showcase its vibrantly colored sensuous clothing. With gladiolas on the center table, and turquoise lanterns and green apples as accents, you feel like you’re walking into a well-designed zen beach lounge, that just happens to have silky soft clothing all around you.

Equally as delightful is that all of Stacia’s clothing is made from sustainable fibers, and most is made from 100% bamboo, which is washable—no dry-cleaning!—and can last for at least 3-5 years if cared for properly. (Who’d have thought the food of pandas could make such a soft, luxurious knit? I was in tactile heaven!)

The mastermind behind Stacia is, of course, someone named Stacy. Stacy Johnson, a true islander at heart—she was raised both in Hawaii and Alaska, creates what she describes as a “1970s surf culture, beach aesthetic… retro, but contemporary” line. Stacy’s no stranger to the world of fashion—Stacia has been in business since 1999, as a successful global wholesale business, selling to over 300 stores.

Stacy came to Santa Monica for a better quality of life after the birth of her first child. Now, a mother of three, Stacy and her family love being close to the beach, plus, now she finds herself right smack dab in the middle of her clientele. In Santa Monica, every day her target customer is walking down the street, unlike New York, where she had been living, where easy, breezy beachwear isn’t as commonplace.

Stacia is primarily known for its rich colors and fibers. Each piece has a unique pattern due to the space dye technique used for the line. Depending on how the pattern falls, sometimes a piece comes out with a stripe, chevron, or diamond effect.

The beauty of Stacy’s designs is that they are über-versatile. You can layer, layer, layer… You can pair ‘em with jeans just as well as a bikini. Her dresses are perfect for a lazy, Sunday afternoon at the beach, or dressed up with boots for an evening soirée.

Another major perk of Stacy’s new boutique is that she has pieces that you can’t find anywhere else… samples and/or tops that are discontinued, and there’s even a basket of the softest babies duds I’ve ever seen that you can only find at the store. Meaning you can get a one-of-a-kind piece, and usually at a lower price. Aloha!

I love Santa Monica, and evidently… so does Stacy.

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Special Offer: Mention ‘Buy Local’ and get 10% off at Stacia through the end of the week.

(310) 393-7100
808 11th Street, Santa Monica, CA

About the Author, Annie
Annie is a recording artist/writer who delights in personal alchemy, whimsy, & quantum physics. She can often be found drinking tea, eating cake, or changing the world. She blogs about the delicacies of daily life in the city of angels at

All pictures taken by Da Xu for Buy Local Market.

Now Open: The Closet

8 years after opening their first boutique in Santa Barbara, The Closet brings their high-end resale store to Main Street. “Santa Monica is such a special place. There is still such a strong sense of community and Main Street is so charming, we love that the businesses here are mostly local and there is a strong focus on creativity and fashion!” said Regional Manager of The Closet Trading Co., Tiana Menelli.

The Closet Trading Company is a women’s high end re-sale boutique specializing in contemporary styles for budget savvy ladies.  The Closet buys, sells, and trades your trendy, lightly worn clothes for cash or trade from 11am-7pm every day of the week.  Brands include Free People, Marc Jacobs, Chloe, Betsey Johnson, Chanel, True Religion and so many more!

No appointments are necessary and free styling appointments are available.

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For more information, please visit their website and Facebook page where event info, updates, special discounts and their item of the day are featured.

Mon.-Sun. 11:00am-7:00pm

The Closet Trading Company
(310) 396-5013
2708 Main St.
Santa Monica, CA 90405

Now Open: The Misfit Restaurant and Bar

I have been waiting to write this one. The Misfit opened right off the Promenade in late April, but right away I knew it would take some time before I could encapsulate what and who The Misfit is. I had heard a lot of good things but wanted to give The Misfit a chance to settle in before I headed there to experience it for myself.

Cheekily named, The Misfit is anything but. It’s moody, dimly-lit, dramatic and fun and has already found a home in Downtown Santa Monica. From the moment you walk in you feel at ease. The raised ceilings make the space feel open while the staff and décor create a very welcoming atmosphere.

The menu, directed by Chef Bruce Kalman is both satisfying and health-conscious; the Misfit accommodates your carnivore friends as well as the vegans amongst you with a variety of small plates, making it easy to share. If you prefer to drink your meals, The Misfit also delivers – and with style. Home to a gorgeous, almost theatrical bar with its curtains and dark wood, The Misfit offers a slew of signature cocktails, as well as an excellent beer and wine list.

I thoroughly enjoyed my evening at The Misfit. Too often a theme is forced as a place tries to find its identity before it has grown into its own. The Misfit is not that at all. There is an unmistakable confidence that is present throughout, the type that is rarely found in a new establishment. The Misfit knows who it is. If you have yet to stop by, we recommend you spend an evening there and get to know it for yourself.

View Slideshow of All Photos

Early Feedback

“Service was excellent and the chairs were really comfy. Very vegetarian friendly… gluten free options, too.” – Erica L. (Yelp)

“Amazing tapas style food that rocked my vegetarian world and my boyfriend’s carnivorous one, great drinks and free salted, chocolate chip cookies to top it all off… I tried the mac & cheese, stuffed peppers, and the chick pea/kale wraps, and all were to die for. I think I just found my new favorite restaurant.” -Rachel R. (Yelp)

M-Th 12:00pm-12:00am
Fri-Sat 12:00pm-1:00am
Sun 12:00pm-12:00am

The Misfit Restaurant + Bar
(310) 656-9800
225 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Looking for more fun things nearby? Check out what else is going on in Downtown.

Now Open: Siptea

Recently moved to Montana Ave. from its former Downtown LA home, Siptea is sure to make a refreshing summer splash in every Santa Monica tea drinker’s life. Your source for hand selected organic teas, Siptea not only sells an impressive array of loose leaf tea but also offers a clean, funky space in which to enjoy them – hot, iced, or poured into a cocktail.

View Cocktail Recipes

Founded by Laura Stewart with the intent to uphold an environmentally responsible and community-building business, Siptea seems a perfect fit for green Santa Monica. In Laura’s own words, “Siptea is a modern organic tea line.  We have hand-picked the best organic teas, striving to get as many fair trade as possible.  We have a passion for tea and try to instill that passion through education and exposure to the world of tea.”

Siptea’s carefully sourced products, eco-friendly teapots, and dedication to quality make it an interesting alternative to the normal coffee grind.

Stop by Siptea during Montana Avenue’s Artwalk, Thursday, July 21st when they’ll be hosting LA painter Ed Moses.

Early Feedback

“What a fantastic selection of organic teas! Friendly service and very well informed staff.  Love the Earl Grey.” – Amy A (Yelp)

Mon.-Sat. 10:00am-5:00pm
Sun. 12:00pm-5:00pm

(310) 395-2626
1627 Montana Ave.
Santa Monica, CA 90403